The writing part I may still be in the early stages of and have lots to learn, I have however learned a few marketing tactics that can be applied and used by any writer.
Included are insights from well-known marketing gurus in the field, that could help you as a writer.
Tip 1: Leverage existing platforms
If you are writing here on Medium, you have already got the general gist of this.
One of the hardest things to do for almost any business and individual is to grow and connect with an audience from scratch. Even with a massive budget, it takes time. Luckily you can largely bypass this headache.
Although simply by writing on Medium will not instantly get you thousands of views, they have already spent years and years building up a loyal audience, you just need to reach out and provide them with value, again and again.
Tip 2: learning from the human-centered Marketing approach
I have learned a lot within my marketing career over the last few years from Seth Godin, both from his blog and his books, one of the most important lessons, is around the generous and genuine act of helping others.
“Marketing is the generous act of helping others become who they seek to become. It involves creating honest stories — stories that resonate and spread.”
Seth Godin, This is Marketing
Have you ever been cold-called? had random leaflets left through your door? Been stopped on the street by a Salesman? Certain age-old methods of direct selling and marketing products to customers, just don’t cut it anymore.
When you approach someone, build a relationship, understand their problems, and provide them with a solution. This tells a different story.
This approach can be adapted to your writing, by keeping one key thing in your mind all the time, what does the reader get out of it?
If you focus on providing value for your readers, over time you will start seeing results.
My advice to any writer is to pick up one of Seth’s books. I would recommend both “The Dip” and “This is Marketing”, both of which will not only help market yourself better as a writer, but I feel will also help in your writing.
“If you can bring someone belonging, connection, peace of mind, status, or one of the other most desired emotions, you’ve done something worthwhile. The thing you sell is simply a road to achieve those emotions, and we let everyone down when we focus on the tactics, not the outcomes. Who’s it for and what’s it for are the two questions that guide all of our decisions.”
Seth Godin, This is Marketing
Tip 3: A/B Testing your headlines
At the beginning of my marketing career, when putting together email marketing campaigns, I quickly realised the value of testing. Both testing different messages and different headlines can help to weed out the bad ideas and understand which headings work.
There are ways of doing this, one of the easiest is testing your ideas on Twitter to see which performs better. The other slightly more costly method is by using social media advertising or Google Ads, to test different headings, to see which performs best. That way you know from the start which heading is likely to perform better.
This specific quote from the “Father of Advertising” has always resonated with me.
“I don’t know the rules of grammar. If you’re trying to persuade people to do something, or buy something, it seems to me you should use their language.”
The key takeaway is the importance of the words themselves. In marketing and advertising having tailored content for a particular audience, will always be more effective in trying to write for everyone. Who is this for?
This also ties in nicely with the second tip. Always keep your audience in mind.
The words matter.